Eastern District Association of Primitive Baptists
PROCEEDINGS OF THE EASTERN DISTRICT
Thursday Morning, September 30,
The Eastern District Association of Primitive
Baptists convened in its 147th annual session with Roller's Chapel Church,
Roller's Chapel Church had its beginning in 1947. A
man in the community by the name of Charles Roller had been called by God to
preach His gospel. He cleaned his barn out and started conducting services
there. The congregation began to grow and Brother Roller felt the need of a
Primitive Baptist Church somewhere in the vicinity of Pattonsville. The closest
church was either Burke's Union or Peterson's Chapel. This created a hardship on
the people of the community since they had to walk to church. He contacted the
people of the community and found that they were willing to establish a church.
Brother Roller's father-in-law, J. A. Pearcy, willingly gave the land where the
church now stands. Brother Roller owned and operated a saw mill at the time and
sawed the church pattern. Men in the community came and helped erect the
building. His wife, Pearly Mae, and other good women helped in every way
possible. Elder Roller's dream became a reality in April, 1948 when the church
was organized and lettered into the association that same year. Originally the
church received twelve members by letter and nine by experience and baptism.
Brother Cecil Bledsoe and Marion Edwards were the first deacons. Ida Pearcy was
the first clerk. Brothers Echol Legg, Emmett Rhoten and Charles Roller were the
first trustees of the church. Elders Ben Hill, Charles Roller and Alex Willis
served as the church's first pastors. Elder Ben Hill brought the first message
in the church after its erection. Others who have served as pastors are: Curtis
Adams, Logan Willis, Bryan Moore, Corbett Bowen, Walter Pendergrass, Nelson
Jones, Gerald Hopkins, J. D. Maggard, Don Woodward, Odus Caudill, Coy Willis,
Mark Holder, and our present pastor, Greg Hill.
In 1961 Roller's Chapel
hosted this great gathering for the first time. It was estimated that between
1,500 and 2,000 people attended daily. In 1969 the association met here again.
Now, thirty years later we feel honored and privileged to once again be the host
church. Goldia Legg, Lenna Bowen, Bryan and Mary Moore, Garley Hood, and so many
others that we could call by name were here during the first two associations,
are no longer with us but as we have heard one of our dear pastors (Brother Alex
Willis) say, "They are just in the other room." We feel their presence with
There have been many changes made to the church building in the last
several years. Changes and improvements that have helped make it more
comfortable for the people. We feel like the same spirit that led Elder Roller
so many years ago is the same spirit that leads and guides us today. God has not
changed, He is the same yesterday, today and forever.
Cool morning air
gave way to bright sunshine as God's children gathered for the first day of the
147th association. Many acquaintances were renewed as everyone arrived. God's
wonderful love was among His children. Sister Zula McCullough led the
congregation in singing some wonderful songs of praise to our Lord and Savior
Jesus Christ. It won't be very long till Jesus shall appear, so we must tarry
here and wait for Him. His matchless love will comfort us, for it is by faith we
can see that land that is fairer than day where we will meet on that beautiful
shore. In memory of Brother Hank Winegar, the congregation sang "Let My Life Be
A Light." The model church is the true church set up by God. Let us all strive
to live our life in a way that is pleasing to God.
Elder Terry Sizemore,
moderator of the association, welcomed everyone and thanked God for this
beautiful day He gave us. Changes in this life are many, but God changes not. He
also brought to our attention the passing of Elder Bill Hatton since we last met
and reminded everyone of our memorial service on Saturday.
Henry Sybert came forward and after a wonderful testimony, lead the congregation
in singing the wonderful song of praise "Brethren We Have Met Again."
moderator appointed the Committee on Religious Exercises which includes: Morris
Giles (chairman), Grover Ferguson and Bobby Caudill.
Prayer is an
opportunity to look beyond, forget the cares of this life and center our hearts
and minds on the Lord. Only through His mercy are we gathered here. Let us not
only love Him, but love one another as well. Prayer requests were made for the
unsaved, Mary Smith, Raymond Disney, Junior Collier, Clarence New, Denny
Hensley, family of Guy Eldridge, Perry Allen, Jr., our young people, Elmer
Newberry, Jim Burke, A. D. Howington's wife and son, Irene "Tea" Winegar, Marvin
Ketron, Leon Ritchie's wife, Delmas Harris, Jason Robinette's nephew, our
nation, the leaders of our nation, the 17 year old girl, Megatha and many
unspoken requests signified by uplifted hands. Elder Lucian Lane took our
petitions to the Lord in a most humble prayer.
Elder Greg Hill, pastor of
the host church, welcomed everyone while the Roller's Chapel singers were coming
to the stand. He asked that we put everything behind us and worship God. We were
blessed with songs of Zion from the church singers and by the Osborne Quartet.
This earth holds no treasure for God's people because heaven holds all for the
children of God. When He whispers sweet peace, all of life's misgivings
disappear. As beggars we have nothing to give, but God gave His son and His son
gave His life that we might go free.
Having been chosen to preach the
introductory sermon, Elder Greg Hill came forward. He thanked God for all the
help that was given to Roller's Chapel. He read from Zephaniah 2:1-3 and used as
a thought "God gathered us together." Our life is hid in Christ and He is always
in the midst of us. One day there will be a great gathering when Christ comes
after His own. Elder Allen Hensley, the alternate, followed with another message
from above. Great things happen when the Lord gathers His children together, for
He gives them a mind to work. God is the author and finisher of our faith. He
blesses us when we gather according to the terms He set up, which bring us
together in one mind and one accord. Let us strive to please God rather than
obey man. Tears of joy and shouts of praise were everywhere as the Lord blessed
us through these men's preaching.
The congregation was adjourned for
lunch with the singing of several songs of praise.
Thursday Afternoon, September 30,
After a wonderful lunch served by the host
church, the congregation gathered in the tent for the afternoon service with the
singing of songs of praise. Oh the joy of that glad meeting just inside the
eastern gate where we'll meet the One who saved us by His marvelous grace. 'Tis
a sweet and glorious thought to know we'll live throughout eternity with our
blessed Redeemer. His unseen hand leads us and guides us through this weary land
till we reach that golden strand.
Elder Darrell Ratliff blessed us with
his testimony and song of praise. We are homesick for sweet Beulah Land, where
there are no sad goodbyes and time doesn't matter, for our home will be
Elder Terry Sizemore thanked the host church for the bountiful
lunch and thanked God for His blessings. He asked that all ministers sign the
register, including visiting ministers.
The moderator read the report
from the Committee on Religious Exercises.
Stand tonight: Darrell
Ratliff, Roger VanHoose and John Bowlin.
Liberty Chapel: Oscar Irvin,
Arry Hickman and Paul Strong.
Stand, Friday morning, October 1, 1999:
Larry Miller and Richard Seiber.
Prayer requests include the unsaved
everywhere, all the requests made in this morning's service and many unspoken
requests signified by uplifted hands. Elder John Turner led us to the throne of
Brother Joe Robinette, chairman of the Committee on Church
Letters, now reports 67 churches of which they recommend accepting. It was
motioned, seconded and voted to accept the recommendations of the committee and
seat those delegates duly elected or appointed by their respective churches as
the voting body of the association.
The delegation was seated in order to
transact the business.
Elder Sizemore asked for nominations for a
moderator pro-tem to serve during the election of the association officials.
Elder John Henry Sybert was nominated. It was motioned, seconded and voted for
him to serve during the election. Elder Sybert thanked the delegation for their
confidence in him just before the election.
Brother Danny Lawson was
nominated to serve as clerk and treasurer. No other nominations were made and it
was motioned, seconded and voted by acclamation for him to serve as clerk and
treasurer for the ensuing year.
Elder Terry Sizemore was nominated to
serve as moderator of the association. No other nominations were made and it was
motioned, seconded and voted by acclamation for Elder Sizemore to serve as the
moderator of the association for the ensuing year.
speaking for himself and the clerk, thanked the delegation for their prayers and
their confidence. The honor of serving this group of God's people is a humbling
experience, and we both thank the delegation from the bottom of our hearts for
their confidence and trust they put in us. Most of all, we thank God for giving
us the opportunity to serve Him in this capacity. He also asked everyone to
continue praying for them that the Lord's work would always be first and
foremost in everything we do.
It was motioned, seconded and voted to
allow the moderator to appoint any and all committees. The moderator then
appointed the following committees:
Committee on Church Letters: Burnice
Sybert (chairman), Wayne Morgan, Bradley Bowen and Paul Johnson
Committee on Newly Constituted Churches: Ministers - Arry
Hickman (chairman), Bob Brown, Jason Robinette; Deacons - Steve Minton, Ralph
Baker; Laymen - Darrell Smith and Jack Osborne.
Committee on Finance:
Bill VanHoose (chairman), Virgil Lipe and Richard Seiber.
Obituaries: A. D. Howington (chairman), Fred Gilreath and Neal
Committee on Arrangements and/or Queries: Oscar Irvin
(chairman), Eckel Head, Lewis Baker, Roger Trent, Roger VanHoose, John Arnott
and Darrell Ratliff.
Due to the passing of Brother Hank Winegar, one of
the Tennessee trustees, the moderator reviewed the list of all association
trustees. It was motioned, seconded and voted to add Brother Billy Jack Johnson
as a Tennessee trustee. The association trustees include:
Wendell Parsons, Cassell Caudill and Jack Creech
Virginia - Jess Akens
Jr., Carl Peterson and Ralph Baker
Ohio - Morris Giles, Joe Pitzer and
Tennessee - Burnice Sybert, Bill Poole and Billy Jack
The moderator asked the delegation to consider our youth by
checking into what might be done to get them more involved in our association.
It was motioned to form a committee to determine the best approach for handling
this matter. After much discussion, a second to the motion was not obtained,
therefore the motion was dropped.
The moderator announced that direction
books to the churches were available beside the clerk's table.
business being concluded, the delegation was dismissed until Friday morning,
October 1, 1999.
Friday Morning, October 1,
The weather was very cool, but that didn't
dampen the spirits of God's children on the second day of the 147th association.
Sister Zula McCullough led us in singing some hymns of praise to the Lord. God
so wonderfully blessed His people as they praised Him through song. In this
world we stand on the promises of God which deliver to us joy unspeakable and
full of glory. The half has never been told about that city He has prepared for
His children. Won't it be wonderful there when we fly away to our new home to be
with the One that lead us by His unseen hand?
Elder Terry Sizemore,
moderator of the association, welcomed everyone back to today's services,
thanking God for His mercy. His blessings have been many during this great
Prayer requests were made for the unsaved, all those made in
yesterday's services, family of Roger Keith, Taft Gilliam, Henry Hurd, Terry's
brother, Henry Wheeler's neighbors - the Walker family, Lucian Lane's sister,
and a host of unspoken request signified by uplifted hands. Elder Eddie Malone
led us to the throne of grace with a most humble prayer.
was called to order to transact the business.
With one minor correction
it was motioned, seconded and voted to adopt the business proceedings of
yesterday as read.
The West View singers blessed us with their songs. We
know of a river that never runs dry and of a fountain that frees the soul from
sin, for we long to see what heaven will be.
Having been chosen by the
Committee on Religious Exercises, Elder Larry Miller came forward to take the
first part of the service. He read Romans 8:1-3 and verse 21 using as a thought
"The law that man comes under." The Lord has made us free. Old things have
passed away because the Lord made us a new creature in Him. We are Christ-like
in God and if our life is hid in Him, when He shall appear, we shall appear with
Him. God's children have liberty and if we don't live a Godly life, it is our
fault. Elder Richard Seiber followed with another message sent from heaven
above. The river that flows from the throne of God will never run dry. His
blessings are endless. He put our sins away as far as the east is from the west
so that we might be free. We can do nothing in ourselves but only through Christ
Jesus living within us. Let us do everything we do for the glory of God. These
men preached so wonderful to us and God used them in a mighty way. Joy
unspeakable and full of glory comes only from God. Don't be afraid to let the
world know you are free.
The Riverside Quartet blessed us with their
songs as we fellowshipped. Then we were adjourned for lunch.
Friday Afternoon, October 1,
After eating another good meal served by the
host church, the congregation gathered in the tent for the afternoon service.
Sister Zula McCullough led us as we sang praise to our most wonderful Savior. He
showered us with holy manna from above. Can't you just imagine that wonderful
place where there will be no sad good-byes or tear dimmed eyes and the soul of
man never dies? In that land of uncloudy skies our eyes shall behold our home
just waiting there for us at the end of life's troublesome ways. How beautiful
heaven must be, for when we are happy in Him, all that is within us
Elder Sizemore welcomed the congregation back while thanking
God for His blessings. He asked everyone to obey the Lord and thanked the host
church for the wonderful job they have done serving this great body. The Lord
will always make a way!
Prayer requests were made for the unsaved, all
those made in earlier services, the revival at Richardson's Chapel, Elder
Leonard Flanary, Sister Bennett from Macedonia, Joyce Carr and many unspoken
requests signified by uplifted hands. Brother Joe Pitzer took our petitions to
The delegation was called to order to transact the
The moderator read the report from the Committee on Religious
Stand tonight: David VanHoose, Lewis Baker and Harold
Poplar Grove: Darrell Ratliff and Bill VanHoose. Liberty Chapel:
John Arnott, A. D. Howington and Gale Derrick.
Mountain View: Jason
Stand, Saturday morning, October 2, 1999: Terry Sizemore and
John Henry Sybert.
The Committee on Newly Constituted Churches reported
that none had been received.
The Committee on Finance reported $5,332.00
in receipts for the year.
The Committee on Obituaries reported that 62
had been received at this time.
The Committee on Arrangements and/or
Queries reported that two were received. The committee determined that one was
answered last year and the other had been answered earlier as printed in the
minutes. A motion was made to read the query from Rose Chapel as an appeal to
the committee's findings, but no second was obtained, therefore the motion was
The men responsible for writing this year's circular letter came
forward. Elders Roger Trent and Jason Robinette looked on as Elder James
Jarnigan read the letter. Its content was straightforward that we all must
present ourselves wholly and acceptable to God. Everyone should study to show
themselves approved and always love one another, even those that might
despitefully use us. We must love as the Lord loves. It was motioned, seconded
and voted to print it in the minutes as read.
Elder Sizemore appointed 3
brethren to prepare the circular letter for 2000. They are: Elders Richard
Seiber and Greg Hill and Brother Delmer Wallen, Sr.
It was motioned,
seconded and voted to have all things which are standard printed in the
It was motioned, seconded and voted to allow the clerk $850 in
appreciation for his services.
It was motioned, seconded and voted that
the host church will be responsible for the maintenance of the kitchen, with any
needed repairs to be paid for by the clerk of the association.
Lawson asked the delegation to relieve him as chairman of the committee to
oversee the electrical and PA systems. He recommended that Brother Delmer
McPherson serve as the chairman of this committee. The association accepted his
recommendation and it was motioned, seconded and voted that the following
committee oversee the association electrical and PA systems: Brother Delmer
McPherson (chairman), Elder Carl Lawson, Elder Howard Sybert, Brothers Scott
Mellons, Bobby Caudill, Roger Smith and Danny Lawson.
Elder Hasco Jenkins
made a motion for the association to purchase a desk light and place it on the
stand to help those trying to read. The motion was seconded and Elder Tommy
Meade offered to donate one to the association. The association agreed to accept
the offer, so the motion and second were withdrawn.
Brother Jim Bowlin
asked the association to remember Hyder Reynolds at the loss of his mother. This
man has been a tremendous help to this association in moving the kitchen from
one location to another, as well as keeping it in running order.
motioned, seconded and voted to allow the clerk to replenish the necessary forms
to properly perform his duties.
It was brought to the attention of the
association that some larger kerosene heaters might need to be obtained for the
tent. No discussion was forthcoming, so the matter was dropped.
were 5 churches that asked for the association to meet with them in 2000. One of
these withdrew before the plea process leaving Beech Grove, Butcher's Valley,
Clear Springs and House Chapel. During the plea process another church withdrew
leaving the vote between Beech Grove, Butcher's Valley and Clear Springs. By a
clear majority, the delegation sent the association to Butcher's Valley, where
the Lord willing we will convene on Thursday morning (October 5, 2000) before
the first Saturday in October, 2000. Introductory - Elder Henry Wheeler;
Alternate - Elder Delmas Harris.
Adjourned until Saturday morning,
October 3, 1999.
Saturday Morning, October 3,
The sun shined over the trees and down into the
valley as God's people gathered for the memorial service on this third day of
the association. The Lord has blessed us with such beautiful weather thus far in
all the services. We were blessed with several individuals singing songs of Zion
in honor and praise to our blessed Redeemer just before Sister Zula McCullough
led the congregation in singing some blessed old hymns. We are redeemed by love
divine, for on that resurrection morning when the trump of God shall sound, we
shall rise to our new home on high. Oh, I want to see Him and look upon His face
in that land where we'll never grow old!
Elder Sizemore welcomed the
congregation back to today's service. Thanks be to God for all His blessings and
watchcare over us. This is a very special day where we honor the memory of those
gone on to their reward. We may be sad at their passing, but we should be glad
for they are with the Lord. Blessed in the sight of the Lord is the death of His
The Clear Springs Quartet filled our hearts with joy with their
songs of praise and wonderful testimony. Weep not friends, we're going home to
glory land where we'll die no more. One day the mighty hand of God will come
down to move His children out. Sister Naomi Atkins reminded us in song that
while He is truly God on the mountain, He is still God in the valley. Our God is
not dead like so many religions have, but our God is alive today and
forevermore. We must live our lives to let all know we belong to God. Our hope
is that the lost would realize their need for Christ in their life and find Him
precious to their soul before it is everlasting too late.
were made for the unsaved, all the requests made in earlier services, Ora
Arnott, Iona Scott, the dear ladies' son and brother, the precious little girl's
mom and family, John Henry Sybert, Tommy Meade's son and brothers, Donald
Sybert's daughters and sons-in-law, Bill Bowlin, a host of unspoken requests
signified by uplifted hands and many more that the clerk did not know or could
not understand the names. Brother Jonathan Buttry led us to the throne of
The delegation was called to order to transact the
With one minor wording change, it was motioned, seconded and
voted to adopt the business proceedings of yesterday as read.
read the resolution of thanks he had prepared. It was motioned, seconded and
voted to print it in the minutes as read.
The moderator read the report
from the Committee on Religious Exercises:
Stand tonight: John Arnott,
Jason Robinette and Jonathan Buttry.
Poplar Grove: Roger
Liberty Chapel: Lucian Lane and Hasco Jenkins.
Creek: A. D. Howington, Wayne Morgan and Earnest Bledsoe.
Stand, Sunday morning, October 3, 1999: Jerry Johnson and
Sunday night, October 3, 1999: Beech Grove, Paul Strong;
Shelby Creek, Harold Head and David Smith.
The Osborne Quartet blessed us
with their songs. God sees beyond today and if we are to ever understand, we
must cling to His saving hand. Some day we will understand it all when He calls
His children to their home on high. Sister Aubra Hill reminded us we must be
about His business and praise His holy name. We all want to say, I want the Lord
to be satisfied with me, but we must do everything for His glory and honor and
He will smile and let us know that He is satisfied with us.
service has been a part of this association since 1956, so the moderator read
the names of those dear departed saints which we remember today. Yes, we miss
them tremendously but they are at rest with our blessed Redeemer. Thank God that
He allowed them to be with us as long as He did.
Elder John Henry Sybert
came forward to take the first part of the service. He read from II Timothy
1:1-12 and used as his thought "The Unfeigned Faith." Unfeigned faith is
genuine, it does not try to fool anyone. Like many we are told about in the
Bible that had this unfeigned faith, these dear saints that have passed from
among us since we last gathered together had unfeigned faith, also. It comes
only from God and only in His way will He deliver it to His children. Elder
Terry Sizemore followed with another wonderful message sent down from heaven.
God is due all praise and honor. It is impossible to do too much for the Lord.
He sent His Son to seek and to save that which was lost, and by this His
marvelous salvation was freely offered to all. Let us be willing vessels so God
can use us to His glory. In a world filled with fakes and imitations, it is a
blessing from God to know the genuine faith that is the unfeigned faith. The God
our forefathers served 147 years ago is the same God we serve today, for He is
the same yesterday, today and forevermore. We don't need anything new, we have
the best of the best, and that is Christ Jesus the Lord.
adjourned until Sunday morning, October 3, 1999.
Sunday Morning, October 3,
The Lord blessed His children with another
beautiful day for this the last day of this great gathering. Just watching as
everyone entered the church, smiling, basking in the blessings of the Lord. The
church was filled and many were outside, but the Lord was all around.
were blessed with congregational singing. Our victory is in the precious blood
of the Lamb. Some sweet day we'll sing the song of victory. We are living in a
brand new world since the Lord saved us. When misgivings darken our way, the
Lord whispers sweet peace to us in that still small voice to dispel all our
fears. Peace, peace, wonderful peace coming down from the Father above sweeps
over our spirit to lead and guide us. God leads His dear children along in
varying ways according to His blessed will.
We were further blessed by
special singing and testimonies from Sister Cora L. Neeley, Sister Doris Burke
and others. A better home awaits for us just beyond the gates. No matter what we
are faced with in this life, we must take the road we know for it leads us to
Jesus. We have so much to thank Him for, so let us search out the old paths and
walk therein. We must not let dust gather where we used to pray, but we must
pray more for each other and do the will of our Father.
Elder Greg Hill,
pastor of the host church, welcomed everyone thanking God for all He has done.
The people of Roller's Chapel count it a privilege and honor to have served this
grand body of God's children.
Prayer requests were made for the unsaved,
Edith Eldridge, Mary Bloomer's mother, brother and sister, dear ladies son and
grandson, Maebelle Wilson and Linel, Dustin Lawson's friends John Kirk and Kelly
Light, now serving in the U.S. Marine Corps and Kevin Burke, Claude Osborne's
son, Greg Hill's children, all our young people, and old as well, all our
churches, especially those without a pastor, and a host of unspoken requests
signified by uplifted hands. Brother Harmon Willis led us to the throne of
grace. We were blessed to hear many wonderful testimonies that the clerk was
unable to get all the names, but the Lord knows each and every one of
Elder Delmas Harris, having been chosen by the Committee on
Religious Exercises, came forward to take the first part of the service. He read
from St. John 4:34-38 using as a thought "Obedience to the Spirit of God." God
gives His children a mind to work; that is, to do the things He would have them
do. God didn't just think about it, but He sent His Son to make a way where we
might have a home eternal in the heavens. Let us not just think about it, but do
what God puts in our mind to do. We are not saved to just sit back and think,
but to go out to the highways and the byways and the hedges to compel the
sinners to come in that they might be saved by the grace of God. Elder Woodrow
Fields followed with another inspiring message from above. We have a better
place waiting for us, but let us work for the Lord in this life so we can enjoy
His blessings here, too. If we don't obey God, it may hinder some of our friends
and loved ones from ever coming to know Christ in the free pardon of sin.
Through Christ we can sow the seed and water it, but God must give the increase.
He will give us rest if we will come to Him in faith believing. These men
preached so wonderfully.
We were proud to have several preaching brethren
in attendance today. We have a lot to be thankful for in our preaching brethren.
God has blessed us with men who will stand and preach the Word of God in a time
when it is not popular. We thank God for each and every one of them and pray
that God would bless them tremendously wherever He may send them to do His
This has been a truly wonderful week in the Lord. Words cannot
express what He has done for His children. We do not know what seeds have been
sown here this week that will be watered on down the road to yield an increase
in days to come. I hope in some way that as you read these few words they will
be a blessing to you and to others that were not able to attend. I pray that the
same spirit that blessed me while writing them will do the same for you. Ignore
the mistakes and realize the intent in which it was written, that being the love
of a brother in Christ as we press on toward our eternal home. May the Lord
richly bless each one of you. Remember all our churches in prayer, and never
forget to give the Lord all the honor and praise that we might see many souls
saved. God bless and keep each and every one of you until we meet